12147 Corey Lake Road, Three Rivers, Michigan (269) 244-5690

Monthly Archive: May 2018

Happy May!

Happy May! Hard to believe how fast this month is going by, isn’t it? The most frequently asked question of late has been: When will greenhouse tomatoes be ready? Answer: Soon! We might be picking some this weekend, but it will take about a week for us to be able to pick in quantities to keep up with demand.

Yes, I shared the first ripe tomato with Tom who manages our greenhouse–it was delicious!

Here’s what we have on the market right now:

Asparagus: We have plenty of asparagus now with the warm weather of this week. Asparagus pricing this year is $2.50 a pound; 3 pounds for $7; or 5 pounds for $11.50. If you get 10 pounds or more, it goes to $2.20 a pound. If you want large quantities (like 20 pounds or more) it helps us if you can call ahead and order it and we can get it ready for you. 269-244-5690.

Rhubarb is ready! Available now for $2.50 a pound. f you need 10 pounds or more, ($2.00 lb) please call us to order in large quantities.

It’s time to plant! The 5 plus inches of rain we have had over the weekend and into Monday have put all of us behind in being able to do spring planting. We are going to work hard to get everything in before it rains again on Saturday! Lots of plants left here this week for home gardens…..we still have a good selection of everything but don’t wait too long in order to get what you want.

Bedding plants:

  • Cole crops: Cabbage, kale, Brussel sprouts, various lettuce varieties, broccoli, chard, and spinach
  • Flower annuals: We have a huge selection of flower annuals….too many to list
  • Tomato plants: We have a large selection of tomatoes (all the ones that we grow here in our own fields) plus mini tomatoes like grape and cherry
  • Herbs
  • Other “heat loving” vegetable plants like peppers, cucumbers, melons, squash, and eggplant
  • Hanging flower baskets: We have lots of hanging baskets, including some of the favorites we carry every year
  • Lettuce bowls, for your “pick your own salad”
  • Specialty pots made up with flower and herb arrangements
  • Large tomato and pepper plants for your patio, porch or yard

Straw: We have extra bales of straw available for your mulching needs. They are $6/bale or 4 bales for $20.

We are currently harvesting lots of lettuce from our certified organic hoophouse as we make room for more plantings. So we will have it on special for $5 a pound this weekend while it lasts. We also have some kale and limited spinach – call if you want it for sure and we’ll put some on hold for you.

Mixed lettuce greens–so tender

The bakery’s offerings for the weekend will be:

  • Cookies: Flower Cut Outs, M&M “Monster” Cookies, Ginger Molasses, S’mores, and Lemon
  • Pies: Apple, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, Rhubarb and Strawberry Rhubarb
  • Breads: Whole Wheat, Whole Grain, Cinnamon, Hamburger and Hotdog Buns
  • Cinnamon Rolls, Sticky Buns, Yeast Donuts
  • Cake Donuts: Buttermilk, Blueberry, and Cherry (made on Friday, Saturday and Sunday only)
  • Slushies

In the bakery freezer case you can find:

  • Local gluten free items from Gluten Free Sensations in Three Rivers: brownies, cookies, cinnamon rolls, cherry and apple pies, and granola.
  • Pork products from Jake’s Country Meats: brats, pork sausage links, bacon, and snacking sticks.

New gift items on the market.

Hard Ciders, Wine and Brandies: We have lots of ciders, including Brunch, Ginger, Hometown Hero, Hopped, Currant/Cacao, Sweet, Semi-Sweet, and Dry ciders. We also have our full line of Hubbard’s Brandy, Double Cherry Wine, and Kaiser Cyser. We plan to start our tastings and tours for the year on Memorial Day weekend. Stay tuned.

Our cider is also available at The Local in Centreville, The Riviera in Three Rivers, Dussel’s Farm Market in Cassopolis, and Craft Beer Cellar in Grand Rapids. We will re-open our cider and brandy tastings on Memorial Day Weekend.

Happenings on the Farm:

We emptied the rain gage frequently and sighed each time we went by the “lakes” in our fields. But we took advantage of the “waiting to dry out time” by continuing our spring spruce up around the farm, putting paint brushes and rollers to work, even on the famous herb garden bird!

This week apples are in full bloom, it is one of the most picturesque spring scenes. We are delighted to see the bees out doing their job and even more delighted that there haven’t been any frost or freeze events so far this spring.

You might have noticed an entire grape vineyard gone on the hill side just east of our market.  These were white Niagara grapes that we sold to Welch’s for juice. However, the demand for white grape juice is down and thus so is the market for these. So you will continue to see us taking out grapes as the year goes on. We think white grape juice is delicious, so if you know of anyone looking for a lot of  white grapes for a commercial product, please let us know.  We’d love to find some new customers and markets for these.

Grape rows coming out

The first vineyard that is gone is going to be planted in sunflowers. We will be having our first sunflower festival in August and are in the planning stages now. We have lots of great ideas for this and are teaming up with ten other farms across the United States who are also in the planning stage to share best practices. More to come! Meanwhile, we have a great sunflower book for sale here at the market and sunflower seeds for little ones wanting to plant sunflowers. It even comes with a pull out measuring tape to keep track of how tall the sunflowers grow!

Everyone at Corey Lake Orchards thanks you for buying local!

 

 

Asparagus, Blossoms & Bees, Caring Mothers: ABC!!

We’re wishing a Happy Mother’s Day to all those whom we call mothers. If you are out this weekend, please stop into our bakery where every mom (or those fulfilling the role) gets a free cake donut of their choice, as our acknowledgement and appreciation of how special you are.

Here’s what we have on the market right now:

Asparagus: We are picking asparagus and should have it through the weekend. The return of cool weather will slow it up a bit. As always, it is best to call before you come out to make sure we have some. 269-244-5690 – we can definitely put back an order for you too. As soon as it gets warm again, we should have plenty! Asparagus pricing this year is $2.50 a pound; 3 pounds for $7; or 5 pounds for $11.50. If you get 10 pounds or more, it goes to $2.20 a pound.

Rhubarb is ready! Available now for $2.50 a pound.  f you need 10 pounds or more, ($2.00 lb) please call us to order.

Bedding plants:  They are here!!

  • Cole crops: Cabbage, kale, brussels sprouts, various lettuce varieties, broccoli, chard, and spinach
  • Flower annuals: We have a huge selection of flower annuals….too many to list
  • Tomato plants: We have a large selection of tomatoes (all the ones that we grow here in our own fields) plus mini tomatoes like grape and cherry
  • Herbs
  • Other “heat loving” vegetable plants like peppers, cucumbers, melons, squash, and eggplant
  • Hanging flower basets: We have lots of hanging baskets, including some of the favorites we carry every year
  • Lettuce bowls, for your “pick your own salad”
  • Specialty pots made up with flower and herb arrangements
  • Large tomato and pepper plants for your patio, porch or yard

    Large patio plants are back this year

Straw: We have extra bales of straw available for your mulching needs. They are $6/bale or 4 bales for $20.

We are currently harvesting lettuce from our certified organic hoophouse. We also have some kale and some spinach – call if you want it for sure and we’ll put some on hold for you.

The bakery seemed to be a popular place on opening weekend and the bakers have worked hard this week to have everything ready for this weekend, including making their special chocolate cream pies.  This weekend’s offerings will be:

  • Cookies: Flower Cut Outs, M&M “Monster” Cookies, Ginger Molasses, S’mores, and Lemon
  • Pies: Apple, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, Rhubarb and Strawberry Rhubarb and Chocolate Cream
  • Breads: Whole Wheat, Whole Grain, Cinnamon, Hamburger and Hotdog Buns
  • Cinnamon Rolls, Sticky Buns, Yeast Donuts
  • Summer Flavors cake donuts: Buttermilk, Blueberry, and Cherry 
  • Slushies

Local Gluten free items are now available. We are partnering with Gluten Free Sensations in Three Rivers and will offer many of their gluten free products, made in their gluten free bakery, frozen and delivered to our bakery freezer. Today we stocked brownies, cookies, cinnamon rolls, cherry and apple pies, and granola. Learn more about them here: Gluten Free Sensations

Owner Loretta made their first delivery today

We also are partnering with Jake’s Country Meats in Cassopolis to supply us with pork products. Now available in the bakery freezer are brats, pork sausage links, bacon and snacking sticks. Pick up a flyer about them next to our freezer or learn more about them here: Jake’s Country Meats

Hard Ciders, Wine and Brandies: We have lots of ciders, including Brunch, Ginger, Hometown Hero, Hopped, Currant/Cacao, Sweet, Semi-Sweet, and Dry ciders. We also have our full line of Hubbard’s Brandy, Double Cherry Wine, and Kaiser Cyser.

Our cider is also available at The Local in Centreville, The Riviera in Three Rivers, Dussel’s Farm Market in Cassopolis, and Craft Beer Cellar in Grand Rapids. We will re-open our cider and brandy tastings on Memorial Day Weekend.

Mother’s Day ideas

  • We can do gift certificates to allow them to pick out their own goodies. We can do these over the phone with a credit card and mail out for you, or have it waiting for the gift recipient to pick up here.
  • We have lots of gift items, gift basket ideas, flower baskets or get her favorite pie or hard cider!
  • Making Mom breakfast? You can get the sausage or bacon, local made pancake mix and maple syrup here from Maple Row SugarHouse:  Maple Row SugarHouse

    Christy Olson, owner of Maple Row Sugar House with their maple syrup offerings

Happenings on the Farm:

Our wonderful team here has worked tirelessly to get the market area ready for another season. This week weeds came out, flowers and herbs went in, grass got cut, trees got trimmed, the large backyard we share with our customers became full of comfortable chairs, tables, and play things. New items we are carrying came in and we’ll begin to feature those as the weeks go on. And we haven’t finished….but we’re getting there.

The triplets and their sister enjoying the new small picnic tables and donuts

Cherry trees are now losing their blossoms and the petals in this cold has us remembering snow storms!Plums and peaches are just finishing bloom stage, and it is exciting to see blueberries, strawberries and apples beginning to bloom. Even more exciting was seeing the blossoms full of bees–busy doing their job of pollinating. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for a good fruit set this year.

strawberries blooming!

plum blossoms

Plant, plant, plant. The beautiful weather early in the week allowed us to continue on with planting. The summer-like weather lured Beth into planting tomatoes, peppers and squash, which usually wait until later in May. In your own gardens, follow at your own risk! Three plantings of sweet corn are now in and coming up along with two plantings of green beans.  Who’s ready for fresh green beans?

pepper plants going in

The enormous oak log that has been sitting in front of the market which has intrigued many of you has now taken its final shape in the process of becoming a bench with foot rests. The inspiration for this came from my winter trip to California. As soon as I saw this, I wanted one for our farm. My son Jay (who is in the tree business) found this log, brought it here (no small task!) and carved it yesterday for my Mother’s Day gift.  We’re still finishing it up, but I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. I’m thinking he’s off the hook for Mother’s Day gifts for many years to come. (See pictures below of this endeavor.)

Our first family to try out the new bench!

Everyone at Corey Lake Orchards thanks you for buying local and sends our best Mother’s Day wishes!

Beth’s husband Joe, and son Chad, sitting on the log bench in California earlier this year

Son Jay shows up to begin the cutting

The first seat finished

Austin getting the foot rests in place

Thanks Jay! One happy mother!

 

 

Ready or Not….Opening Day is Here!

We’re opening for the 2018 season on Friday, May 4th with our normal daily hours of 8 am to 6 pm, 7 days a week, including holidays! Are we ready? We are in spirit, as we can’t wait to have our customers back. But…..you may find we don’t have everything quite together as the 3.5 inches of rain combined with a drain problem flooded our market and bakery building last night. We are all cleaned up and drying out.  So….if there is something you’re looking for that you don’t see–ask us, it may still be in the back!

Wow….3.5 inches plus!

The winter to summer weather has pushed everything along quickly. So if you are out this weekend, you will be able to enjoy cherry and peach blossoms! Simply breathtaking!

Sweet cherries blooming

We have asparagus up, but due to the rain, we cannot get in to pick it. As soon as the field can dry out and we can get in, we will have it available. So please call before you drive out to see it we were able to pick. We are happy to take your order, just call us at 269-244-5690 and we will call you when we can fill it.

Fresh local rhubarb: $2.50 lb

Bedding plants:  They are here!!

  • Cold Crop: Cabbage, kale, brussels sprouts, various lettuce varieties, broccoli, chard, and spinach
  • Flower annuals: We have a huge selection of flower annuals….too many to list
  • Tomato plants: We have a large selection of tomatoes (all the ones that we grow here in our own fields) plus mini tomatoes like grape and cherry
  • Herbs
  • Other “heat loving” vegetable plants like peppers, cucumbers, melons, squash, and eggplant
  • Hanging Flower Baskets: We have lots of hanging baskets, including some of the favorites we carry every year
  • Lettuce bowls, for your “pick your own salad”
  • Specialty pots made up with flower and herb arrangements

    Amber organizing all of the vegetable plants

Straw: We have extra bales of straw available for your mulching needs. They are $6/bale or 4 bales for $20.

We are currently harvesting lettuce from our certified organic hoophouse and more greens will be here shortly.

The bakery will also open for the year on Friday, May 4th, and yes, they will be making donuts that day. Amy and Michaela had to test the donut machine today—so everyone working did their part to eat the donuts–we proclaim the donut machine is good to go! It was so great to have a donut after being deprived since fall! (Reminder: we make our cake donuts on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.) For Mother’s Day Weekend, feel free to place your order in advance.

These disappeared fast!

This weekend’s offerings will be:

  • Cookies: Flower Cut Outs, M&M “Monster” Cookies, Ginger Molasses, S’mores, and Lemon
  • Pies: Apple, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, Rhubarb and Strawberry Rhubarb
  • Breads: Whole Wheat, Whole Grain, Cinnamon, Hamburger and Hotdog Buns
  • Cinnamon Rolls, Sticky Buns, Yeast Donuts
  • Summer Flavors cake donuts: Buttermilk, Blueberry, and Cherry 
  • Slushies

Hard Ciders, Wine and Brandies: We have lots of ciders, including: Brunch, Ginger, Hometown Hero, Hopped, Currant/Cacao, Sweet, Semi-Sweet, and Dry ciders. We also have our full line of Hubbard’s Brandy, Double Cherry Wine, and Kaiser Cyser.

Our cider is also available at The Local in Centreville, The Riviera in Three Rivers, Dussel’s Farm Market in Cassopolis, and Craft Beer Cellar in Grand Rapids. We will re-open our cider and brandy tastings on Memorial Day Weekend.

Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 13 this year!

  • If you a on a quest for a unique gift for Mom, Grandma, Aunt, or other person who has nurtured you as a mother would, we are here to help. Looking for a gift from nature? Peruse the variety of pretty flower or herb arrangements already planted in fun containers (made by our own creative Teri and Terri) or lettuce bowls for a salad that continues to grow through the season or purchase bedding plants from flowers to herbs to veggies and create your own potted design.

    Teri and Terri are the best!

  • Another gift idea is using our fresh produce. We can tie raffia to make an asparagus or rhubarb bouquet for your favorite cook. Organic greens, a favorite? How about a bag of lettuce, or spinach with a salad spinner to clean the greens in the easiest, most efficient way?  (If she doesn’t own a salad spinner, these are a must have. They really make it so much easier to get your greens clean.)
  • Check out the ceramic work by Mollie whose whimsical bowls were in the market last season. She just delivered more stock which includes vases and single stem flowers for hanging that will serve as a lasting reminder of your thoughtfulness.
  • If the smell of fresh baked goods is a favorite, consider the options from the bakery. Think muffins, donuts, dessert bars, pecan rolls, cinnamon rolls, pies, cookies, bread, and more. What could be more comforting than a basket of baked goods?
  • For Mother’s Day (and for any day that you need a gift) Peggy is happy to help make a basket up for you, starting at $10 and adding in what you want. So whether you choose plants, market produce, baked goods, adult beverages, local honey, maple syrup, or spicy mustard or one of our select gift items, a basket can be the perfect present. We really enjoy working with you to share the gifts that celebrate the seasons of life. Call and talk to Peggy, or leave a message for her to call you back, and she will create just what you need in the price range you desire.
  • We can also do gift certificates to allow them to pick out their own goodies. We can do these over the phone with a credit card or mail out for you, or have them waiting for the gift recipient to pick up here.

Happenings on the farm:  We’ll catch you up next week, just know it’s happening!  I am grateful for our employees and several contractors (Roberts Excavating and Mason Harvey Hersherger) who came to our rescue today with the flooding issue so we could open on time. Some employees mopped, cleaned and moved everything, while the bakery and market staff patiently worked around everything to continue opening day readiness! Huge thanks to Liv, Terri, Teri, Teresa, Adolfo, Amy, Michaela, Patti, and Peggy. (Becca would like to note that Beth deserves a huge share of the credit for getting us ready today as well. Thank you, Beth!)

David and Austin helped build an additional drain system

Everyone at Corey Lake Orchards thanks you for buying local!  See you soon!